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NPD - will it replace my entire board? Possibly...

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by scuzzy, Jun 3, 2018.

  1. Mister Boh

    Mister Boh

    Oct 23, 2016
    Annapolis, MD
    I am too lazy to use these but am impressed when people can tweak them to be effective.

    Glad you are getting so much use from it!
    BrentSimons likes this.
  2. Johnny Crab

    Johnny Crab ACME,QSC,Fame/Hondo/Greco/HELIX user & BOSE Abuser Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2004
    South Texas
    If it is they seem to have added a much-noticed digital artifact/glitch that is audible when played solo. In a band setting, it is not noticed unless one is aware of it. BassPODXTLive and HD500X did not have this "added feature". I've yet to run experiments to see if putting a gate, different comp, or something can be done to clean it up.
  3. Yeah, same here. A friend of mine (guitar player) just bought the Helix to replace his monster pedal board, and keeps telling me I need to come over and play around with the Pearce BC1 models. I have to admit, I'm more intrigued than I thought I would be.
  4. singlemalt

    singlemalt Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2007
    White Salmon, WA
    How’s the headphone sound? Does it have a drum machine or any beats built in? How’s the looper?

    I do a lot of practicing with just my Zoom B3 connected to the iMac. Having drums, even really basic beats, syncing to the looper is pretty sweet. No drift.

    Getting good sound, like everybody says, takes some twiddling.

    Noticing that the HD 500 is on sale at $400 new,...that’s the price of one Darkglass Alpha Omega Ultra.

    I’m a Swiss Army knife kind of guy, ampless is my goal.
    BrentSimons likes this.
  5. JKos


    Oct 26, 2010
    Torrance, CA
    Headphone sound can be divine (I love it.). No drum machine or beats. The looper is quite basic and does not sync or intelligently "close the loop," so to speak.
  6. ll Rip ll

    ll Rip ll

    Jul 20, 2014
    Lebanon, OH
    I literally just bought an HDX for a guitar gig. It hadn't occurred to try a bass through it.. I'll have to give it a go! It sounded great at the guitar gig, btw; got compliments from the BL.
    BrentSimons likes this.
  7. BtaylorTheRogue


    Nov 14, 2016
    The smartest thing I ever did with my line 6 was to download other people’s presets from the net.
    BrentSimons likes this.
  8. Skybone


    Jun 20, 2016
    I've used mine for the last year and a half, and still very happy with the sounds I get from it.

    I don't use a lot of effects, but they are there when I need them, and they all sound good when I use them. Like I said, it pays off to spend a bit of time setting things up, not only through headphones with the PC Editor, but in the rehearsal room too. However, once you're set up, that's it, unless you're adding effects to a core sound, or you're wanting to add another amp setup for a different sound.

    You can set the HD so that the top row of switches turns effects on & off, and the bottom row changes between patches (standard setup), or you can set it so that all of the footswitches turn effects on & off. TBH, I haven't tried it with all switches for effects, and how to switch between patches with that setting, but it can be done. Haven't used the FX loop either.

    Headphone sound is great, no drum patterns, haven't tried the looper.

    I went from a B3 to a PODxt Live to the HD500X. The HD is far better than either IMO.

    My goal was ampless as well (still have one though!), and the HD500X succeeds in this remit.

    Like I said in my earlier post, you don't need to buy an FRFR rig either, just use your existing bass amp, but bypass the amp's pre-amp section by plugging the HD into the FX Return.

    Like I said, it works for me (and no complaints from the band either), and I've been using it for the last year and a half.
  9. RexxRokket


    Apr 23, 2012
    I would not change a darkglass for a multifx... also you can go ampless having those darkglass which have the DI (almost every single of them if not all). Im not a Darkglass guy but an Sansamp, still I recognize their great quality, wouldnt change that for a multifx.
  10. singlemalt

    singlemalt Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2007
    White Salmon, WA
    I was really just commenting on the price of two units I mentioned. The Darkglass Alpha Omega Ultra is certainly a bitchin pedal. It’s also a new release and enjoying well deserved buzz, as well as a hefty price tag. One day, when the used market prices settle a bit, I’ll probably try one.

    The Line6 HD500x is still in production, but a couple rungs down the ladder in terms of the current Line 6 product line. I’ve got a used one inbound. We’ll see how it goes. Multi’s can be so complicated that they end up being pretty paperweights until they are sold for another whimsy in the quest for tone. (Like the Zoom B9.1 ut that totally bamboozled me)

    Or they can be a long term fixture. My Zoom B3 isn’t going anywhere. (Granted it’s not worth enough now to bother with selling it) I like it.

    Same with single pedals. I run a “catch and release” operation. My first Darkglass, the B3k, went back in the TB endless river of pedals after a few months of trying like it. The Zoom B3 that followed has been a workhorse. It’ll probably go in the effects loop of the HD500x to provide beats.

    I’ve gone through many a pre, boost, drive type fx over the years, and low and behold, there’s the MXR M-80, still in service ten years later.

    The multi fx vs single boutique pedals discussion has always been about “bang for the buck” as well as tone and user experience.

    My experience so far is that the multis stay home and enhance practice time, while the M-80 and Ovnilab Smoothie got out to play. As far as ampless goes, these two, running straight into the mixer do it for most things. I could take a rig, but I’m reluctant to add to the already high volume.

    There is always a significant investment in time to learn a multi, but single pedals, and the interaction between a number of stomps in a signal path (not to mention connections, power supplies, and the infrastructure to organize all of it) can be daunting as well.

    As always, ymmv, no warranty, and no money back if not satisfied...
    wmmj and BrentSimons like this.
  11. Skybone


    Jun 20, 2016

    The debate of multi-FX vs. Single Pedals will rage on and on, and as singlemalt says, it is very much down to a "bang for your bucks" decision. There are compromises with both choices, however, there are bonuses with both choices. At the end of the day, it is up to the player to decide which route is best for them.

    Personally, I'm happy with going down the Multi-FX route, as they have come on in leaps and bounds in recent years, and the multi gives me great "bang for my bucks", not only offering great amp & cab sims for DI'ing (as well as DI options), but many effects options as well.

    Having been down the hand built valve/toob amp, boutique analogue pedals and custom hand wound pickups route with my guitar rig, I think I know when things sound good (and my guitar rig does sound really good to my ears!). I would also argue that my bass rig sounds really good, and I've been more than happy with it for the last year and a half.

    At the end of the day, the player needs to open their ears to any and all sonic possibilities, so as to get the best sound out of their instrument for any given situation. YMMV. :)
    BrentSimons and scuzzy like this.
  12. scuzzy


    Feb 15, 2006
    Troy, MO
    getting ready to record with my wife, so I needed to familiarize myself with the interface and recording program some more, so I made a really quick (rushed), fairly crummy playing demo of a few settings I have dialed in on my HD500X. This was with my ovation magnum, both pickups on, Dean Markley Blue steels. It is with a pick just to show the variety. Forgive the poor playing. by the end, I just played some Tool as I'm just not that creative! Straight from the POD into the Presonus Audiobox USB 96. No editing whatsoever. Enjoy!

    The settings are in order as follows....
    1. Clean SVT through 810
    2. Driven GK 800RB through 810
    3. Slightly driven HiWatt
    4. Driven Marshall Super Lead
    5. A custom setting I came up with.
    BrentSimons likes this.
  13. singlemalt

    singlemalt Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2007
    White Salmon, WA
    My HD500x arrived last night. A few hours flailing around with the computer side of things and it’s up and running. I’m sure my computer ineptness played a roll.

    Editor software is pretty sweet, however I wish the window could be enlarged or resized. It’s fine, but bigger would be better for my screen. And my eyes.

    I’ve barely scratched the surface, but damn, this thing is cool.

    Usb connection lets me get playback from iTunes, got my drum machine in the aux in, headphone sound is wonderful. This should consume many hours, but I can see it working out for live playing.

    Definitely going to be reading the manuals, available online, and I’m thinking about adding the bass pack. Previous owner built some cool patches from the stock amps.

    I’m very excited about this thing for $300 used.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2018
  14. Skybone


    Jun 20, 2016
    You definitely need to add the HD Bass Pack.
    scuzzy and BrentSimons like this.
  15. gregmon79

    gregmon79 I did it for the muff... Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2012
    Chicago IL
    This was exactly how I felt about the Helix stuff too for a while. I was indifferent. But then I kept hearing from sources I trusted that it sounded really good. I still can't believe I bought the HX because I wasn't totally sold on the idea yet. Then I played it. Totally blew me away. Even today after what, 2/3 months, it still highly impresses me.
    PaulJSmith and jaysbass2002 like this.
  16. Yeah, I had a weird day with that. I'd made a comment on one of Billy Sheehan's Facebook posts regarding the Pearce, and he responded regarding those sounds being in the Helix. He kept really plugging it to me, at the same time my friend was sending me text messages about his new Helix. It was pretty entertaining to have the two of them trying to get me to try it.

    I still haven't. :laugh:

    Seriously, though, if I could get the Pearce sounds out of it, as well as come close to that guitar tone that Akira Takasaki got on Loudness' Thunder In The East album, that would seriously free up some floor space in my small home studio.
    wmmj likes this.
  17. BrentSimons

    BrentSimons Supporting Member

    Mar 4, 2004
    Vergennes,VT USA
    That's awesome! :) I really like your custom setting!
    Best wishes,
    scuzzy likes this.
  18. Skybone


    Jun 20, 2016
    I have a HD Bean incoming (backup to the HD500x).

    Just need to get Line6 Monkey & License Manager working now!
  19. BrentSimons

    BrentSimons Supporting Member

    Mar 4, 2004
    Vergennes,VT USA
    Any chance you could post more clips when you get a chance? Effects, fuzzes, etc?
    Thank you,
  20. JKos


    Oct 26, 2010
    Torrance, CA
    I hate to sound like a broken record, but I'm going to repeat myself.

    I have found the best approach with these units is to dive in with no preconceptions of what each amp and speaker cab should sound like. Try them all in all combinations. You just don't know what combo might be killer.

    - John
    wmmj, FilterFunk, Skybone and 2 others like this.

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